Opinion: Remarkable season for Charles Henderson

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 3, 2007

Looking for a cinematic comparison for the Charles Henderson Trojans?

Let's try Rocky. Like Sylvester Stallone's character in the 1976 Best Picture winner, the Trojans have been knocked around a good bit.

They're coming off back-to-back underachieving seasons, and earning unexpected success.

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Sure, they've been beaten up a bit - look at the preseason loss to Pike County. But they're still standing in the end. They've earned their name as champions this season.

Time and again these kids have been knocked down. Down and out against Carrol? Not a chance. The Trojans came back in the final minutes to win.

Brutal, physical encounters with dominant past champions? See Eufaula.

What about beating up the 5A Region 2 bully, Valley? Check.

And now, in back-to-back weeks, Charles Henderson has scored in the last minute to snag wins and keep their undefeated streak alive.

They've done whatever it takes to win - and that's what a champion does. Period.

No other team in Charles Henderson history has won 10 games in the regular season. As coach Hugh Fountain told them during a post-game pep talk Friday night, no one can ever take away what they've earned on the football field.

The undefeated regular season has people whispering about a possible state title.

Let's keep those whispers to a minimum. The Trojans are trying to take one game at a time, starting next week when Charles Henderson hosts Parker.

But it's hard not to be optimistic. It's unfair right now to say that these kids are a team of destiny.

But it's not out of the question, either.

Like Rocky, the Trojans have been through a difficult time. But now they have a shot at greatness.

All eyes are turning toward a team that wasn't expected to be quite this good. And Charles Henderson continues to rise to the occasion.

Rocky's tag line was that &#8220he just wanted to go the distance.”

That's what the Trojans want. All year, their motto has been one simple word: Finish.

Finish the play. Finish the series. Finish the game.

Going the distance for the Trojans would mean a trip to Birmingham and a chance at a state championship.

That's where the comparison ends. I don't think Charles Henderson would be content to just show up in Birmingham.

These kids want to win.

If they go to Birmingham, they want to bring a title back to Troy.

If that happens, better show those kids Rocky II before the game - that's where he actually wins the title.

Sports editor Bobby Mathews can be reached at 670-6315 or bobby.mathews@troymessenger.com